Gold Prices Fall from 4-Week High, Silver Tumbles 4%


Fine Gold BarsU.S. gold prices declined 0.7 percent Thursday, falling from the previous session’s four-week high. Silver was pounded, tumbling 4 percent and toward the low $36 an ounce level. Risk aversion, profit-taking and a climbing euro were among the factors analysts cited for the southerly move in precious metals prices.

August gold prices stepped back $10.50 to close at $1,532.70 an ounce on the Comex in New York. Gold’s lowest level came in at $1,520.40. It reached a high of $1,545.50.

"With the euro stable, you’re losing the flight-to-quality bid in gold," Adam Klopfenstein, a senior strategist at Chicago broker Lind-Waldock, was quoted on Bloomberg. "A decrease in economic growth takes away the argument from the inflation camp to buy gold," Klopfenstein added.

Gold prices are trending in a very narrow range "on worries that the global slowdown will give the U.S. dollar enough of a rally to stomp on the commodity bull’s feet," Richard Hastings, a macro strategist at Global Hunter Securities, said according to MarketWatch.

"Overall, the trend is for increased demand for gold as a form of liquid currency, and we don’t expect the U.S. dollar to rebound strongly or for long. Therefore, the outlook for gold remains favorable."

Silver prices for July delivery tumbled $1.492 to settle at $36.202 an ounce. Silver prices hit an intraday low of $35.545 and a high of $37.415.

"Comex gold and silver futures markets closed a choppy trading session lower Thursday. However, prices ended up from their session lows as the U.S. dollar index sold off late and crude oil prices rebounded from their earlier lows," noted Jim Wyckoff of Kitco Metals Inc.

"Profit taking by shorter-term traders, from recent gains, was featured Thursday. Silver still posted strong losses on the day. Risk aversion is in the market place following a spate of weak U.S. economic data recently, and ahead of Friday morning’s key monthly U.S. jobs report."

Platinum prices for July delivery lost $6.10, or 0.3 percent, to close at $1,817.80 an ounce. It traded between $1,805.40 and $1,829.10.

Palladium prices for September delivery declined $8.70, or 1.1 percent, to settle at $770.40 an ounce. Prices ranged from a low of $766.20 to a high of $780.20.

London precious metals were mixed for another day, with gold the standout in registering a modest pick-up. When comparing their fixing prices on Thursday (PM) from those on Wednesday (PM), gold added $5.75 at $1,539.50 an ounce while silver declined 73.0 cents to $37.220 an ounce. Platinum and palladium each declined $5.00. Their respective fix prices were at $1,823.00 and $775.00.

On Wednesday, the one-ounce American Gold Eagle was the only coin to advance from the U.S. Mint’s bullion product line-up. On Thursday, the American Silver Eagle had the distinction of rising (+25,000) while the Mint’s other bullion coins remained unchanged. The following are the latest bullion sales as published by the Mint.

US Mint 2011 Bullion Coin Sales
Gold Eagle Coin (1 oz.) 0 15,000 466,500
Gold Eagle Coin (1/2 oz.) 0 0 55,000
Gold Eagle Coin (1/4 oz.) 0 0 56,000
Gold Eagle Coin (1/10 oz.) 0 0 215,000
Gold Buffalo Coin (1 oz.) 0 0 74,000
Silver Eagle (1 oz.) 25,000 25,000 18,926,500
ATB Silver Bullion (5 oz.)* 0 0 326,800

*ATB Silver bullion coin sales figures are generally released just once a week, and have an "as of date" of Thursday.

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